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The Bridge programming modifications due to lower back pain

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  • The Bridge programming modifications due to lower back pain


    I wasn't sure if I should post this to pain and rehab forum or here (I already posted some lower back pain questions in pain and rehab forum). This post is more about programming than lower back pain in general so I decited to post this here.

    So, I hurt my back deadlifting weeks ago. Currently I can't pull a heavy deadlift due to lower back pain. Squats, bench and press are pain free. Manual labour work isn't making the situation worse either. Sometimes I have lower back pain when I round my back in different scenarios. Last time I deadlifted I had pretty bad lower back pain even with submaximal weights. However, something very submaximal like a set of 5 with 70 kg for example doesn't make the pain worse.

    So, there is a load I can deadlift without making the sympthoms worse. I am currently doing the last week in the Bridge. I am starting the Bridge again after this week because I saw decent (not great) progress but I could have progressed more without lower back issues. I may have to do some programming modifications though. I don't feel like moving into other BBM templates now because I couldn't do the Bridge complitely.

    On day 3 (deadlift day), I might do all sets of 5 with 70 kg or something because it is really light and does not make the situation worse. I have recently hurt my back trying to deadlift (after the injury) somewhat heavy so I don't want to do that again. This basically means that I won't be using RPE for deadlifts because the weights I can pull without much lower back pain are RPE 0. One reason why I still have lower back pain could be that I have too high performace goals during rehab progress. I would like to pull a deadlift pr even now.

    To avoid detraining, day 1 (deadlift variation) could be block pulls if they feel better. They might feel better because I have lower back pain off floor/mid rep. I might have to experiment with different block hights, I would like to keep the blocks bellow the knee though. If I can't pull heavy with block pulls, then I just pull light with them as well. In that case, would heavy squats help to avoid detraining in deadlifts? Because I can squat heavy without back pain.

    There is more info in my training log.

    Hi everyone, I am starting the Bridge on Monday. Training history and stats: I have done bro-splits, Stronglifts and Madcow before. My 5 rms after Stronglifts were 95 kg squat, 80 kg bench, 130 kg deadlift and 50 kg press. 5 rms after Madcow were 120 kg squat, 92.5 kg bench, 145 kg deadlift and 57.5 kg press. Before

  • #2

    I think that lifting in general is likely to prevent detraining and further, I wouldn't be worried about detraining a particular lift in the short term while you're trying to come back. I think that mind set might set you up to make some less-than-wise decisions, ya know?

    If it were me, I'd find a variation, rep range, and tempo that let you hit an RPE 7-8 for your top efforts and progress the variation, rep range, and tempo back towards the prescribed variation little by little, week by week.

    To be clear, I wouldn't just arbitrarily do 3 sets of 5 at a predetermined weight, but would rather advocate for sets of 10 using a 5-3-0 tempo RDL or sumo from blocks, or something like that.

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    • #3
      5-3-0 tempo RDL for sets of 10 sounds interesting. It would limit the weight I can use but due to tempo it would still be challenging (I got crushed by 3-0-3 tempo squats in the Bridge). I think I start doing that on both deadlift days. Today PDF said barbell rows, I have some back pain with them as well so I did them very light (40 kg-45 kg). However, that definitely wasn't enough stimulus for my upper back. So I probably should find another variation.

      There already are chins 1-2x/week in the Bridge so maybe switching rows to chins isn't the best idea. Would chest supported rows (or even row machine) be a good alternative? Single arm DB rows could work too.

      I start the Bridge again next week, I skip week 8's last day. At least I got pin squat rep PR and press PR today. Hopefully my lower back feels better after 8 weeks, after that I think that Powerbuilding 1 could be my next program.